Report: NHL Officially Cuts Ties, Communications With KHL

Frank Seravelli of Daily Faceoff is reporting that on Monday, the NHL provided formal notice to Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) that they have suspended operation of their Memorandum of Understanding, thus officially severing communications between the two leagues as a result of Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine.

In a memo distributed to GMs on Monday, obtained by Daily Faceoff, the NHL instructed its teams to “immediately cease all dealings [direct or indirect] with the KHL and KHL Clubs [and all representatives of both], as well as with player agents who are based in and continue to do business in Russia.”

That will have an impact on the ability of NHL teams to quickly and efficiently sign KHL free agents. But teams remain permitted to do so, so long as they are free and clear of contractual obligations.

Bogdan Trineyev, selected by the Capitals in the fourth round (#117 overall) is the only current Capitals prospect playing in Russia, but remains unsigned and is still under contract with the KHL’s Dynamo Moscow club. It is believed that Trineyev’s current KHL contract will expire this summer.

Trineyev has spent time between Dynamo’s Junior team (20 games) and the KHL team (11 games) so far this season. The 6’-3” right winger, who hails from Voronezh, Russia, turned 20 on March 4. More on Trineyev and his season here.

The NHL notified the KHL that it “will continue to respect existing and future KHL contracts,” though it will no longer have the ability to verify contractual status directly.

“We will have only limited contractual information regarding players who are currently or last played in the KHL,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly wrote in the memo.

According to Seravelli, in order for an NHL team to sign a player from the KHL, the interested NHL team must inquire with Central Registry to inquire if the last information available from the KHL demonstrates that the player is on an expiring KHL contract, and teams must produce “independent written evidence demonstrating that the player is entirely free of any and all potentially conflicting contractual obligations in the KHL for 2022-23 and beyond.”

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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3 Responses to Report: NHL Officially Cuts Ties, Communications With KHL

  1. redLitYogi says:

    I guess the top Russian prospects are going to slip way down in this draft. There’s a generational talent in Matvai (?) who will be of draft age next year. Maybe by then all this madness will be over and Russia will be out of Ukraine. (And maybe Putin will be writing his memoirs far away from the Kremlin where he clearly no longer belongs.)

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Agree Yogi, uncertain times to say the least. Trineyev looks like he could be something, but we will never really know for sure until we get him to Hershey.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Not to be a pessimist but this could be a long term situation. Not looking good for current prospects as well as kids in the Russian pipeline.

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